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Former influential MP suspected of treason flees to Russia

His family owns a $4 million apartment there.

Former influential MP suspected of treason flees to Russia
Oleksandr Yefremov
Photo: Anticor

A former head of the Party of Regions faction in the Ukrainian parliament, ex-MP Oleksandr Yefremov, who is accused of treason in Ukraine, left the country after the start of Russia's full-scale invasion through Slovakia and has not returned since, according to Skhemy, an investigative journalism project by Radio Liberty.

Yefremov is currently in Moscow. Before the invasion, he had travelled to Russia several times, most recently in February 2022.

Journalists found that Yefremov is registered in a luxury apartment in Moscow's Triumph Palace residential complex. This property is registered in the name of the former MP's son, Ihor Yefremov. Its total area is more than 650 sq m and its estimated value is about $4 million [UAH 150 million].

The Office of the Prosecutor-General reported that Yefremov was accused on several charges, but no preventive measure has been slapped on him, neither has he been put on the wanted list. The former MP refused to talk to Skhemy.

As reported earlier, 69-year-old Oleksandr Yefremov is accused of a number of crimes in Ukraine. In particular, according to the investigation, the MP contributed to the creation of the separatist Luhansk People's Republic and helped the separatists to seize the administrative buildings of the Luhansk regional state administration and the Security Service of Ukraine in 2014. He is also accused of treason.

Yefremov denies these charges, and his lawyers call the prosecutors' arguments "unconvincing". The case against him is currently in court.

Yefremov was released from custody in 2019 after three years in the Starobilsk detention centre. He was initially released under house arrest, and then the measure of restraint was changed to a personal recognizance for two months until November 2019, which was not extended afterwards. One of the ex-MP's lawyers in the case was Andriy Smirnov, who is currently the deputy head of the presidential office.

After his release from the pre-trial detention centre, Yefremov began to travel abroad regularly, in particular, he visited Russia right before the full-scale invasion.

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